Microsoft has a lot to be proud of. They helped pioneer desktop computing. They have very successful platforms like SQL Server and Sharepoint. They are even working on a new mobile phone that doesn’t support copy and paste. But, I would argue their most popular product in use today is Excel. Mayhaps ‘popular’ isn’t the best word here. Most reasonable people will probably agree that Excel is the predominant number crunching tool in the marketplace.…

On Thursday, September 30, 10:30AM EST, Bert Scalzo and I will be doing a Quest sponsored Webcast – “DBAs Versus Developers.” Sign Up/Register for the Webcast That sounds awfully contentious, Jeff! When visiting customers I am often talking to a group of developers in the morning and DBAs in the afternoon. In the morning, I tell my DBA jokes. In the afternoon, I make friends by piling on the developers. From time to time we…

Updated for 2015! If I were attending as a developer/DBA, here are the things I would be doing: Take notes, collect materials. Come back to work, put on a lunch seminar sharing the biggest things you learned during the week – make it EASY for your boss to approve #OOW16. Put Twitter handle on name badge. Plan for sessions in advance using the Schedule Builder Only pack in carry-ons. You won’t want to be waiting…

I spend a lot of time speaking to PL/SQL development teams. A conservative estimate would break down to about 200 presentations a year and 2,000 developers. I have several stock presentations, but I prefer to have conversations with my audience rather than just start throwing slides up on the projector. If we find a topic of interest, then I can jump into presentation mode. When I get desperate for audience participation, I’ll start throwing concepts…

I have never been really good at telling people ‘No.’ Let me clarify that – I have never been really good at telling people I work with ‘No.’ This trait put me in an interesting position recently when both @BrentO and @CHasker Instant Messaged me at work. Apparently I was the lucky guy to run Quest’s new Wiki/Blog site, OraDBPedia. If you are plugged into the wacky world of SQL Server, then you know all…

I travel quite frequently for my job. Number one on my list of ‘must have things’ on the road is a Navigation device. This used to be my trusty Garmin, but now thanks to my new Android device, I have Google Maps. There have been times and places where I don’t have the device available – either the GPS satellites cannot be acquired or i’m in D.C. where the accuracy of the positioning seems artificially…

In an earlier post, I discussed the merits and deficiencies around using the * syntax in a SELECT statement. I have been using this topic as a way to bring up lively discussions while doing database tools demos for our SQL and Oracle customers. I must admit I am extremely dismayed by the amount of Senior level folks who do not understand why this is not an ideal way to write queries. In a lot…

One of the downsides to moving off the Apple technology platform for your mobile device is not being able to use iTunes to mange your media content on said mobile device. Enter doubleTwist! I have received two recommendations to try out the program after bemoaning the ‘drag and drop’ methodology of synching content to my new Android device. It is interesting to note that the Verizon reps are being trained to push people to doubleTwist.…

I had to check out Brent’s LinkedIn account to see just how long he had been at Quest. Wow, 2.25 years. It was only about a year ago that I became aware of Brent’s presence. I actually can’t remember if I stumbled across his blog first or heard his name mentioned in a conference call. Ahhh, as I type this, I now recall how I ‘met’ Brent. Via Twitter. @BetsyLM had compiled a list of…

After waiting nearly six weeks to receive my Incredible, I can honestly say it WAS worth the wait. Updated: Friday, July 16, 2010 Two Weeks Later… I have had very few problems with the phone and have been able to successfully navigate around them. The very first problem was with activation. Phone would not activate on its own. First Verizon support guy would not activate my phone. Second Verizon support guy, Chris, did activate it…

Tradeshows, user groups, conferences, seminars are all used by vendors to meet with customers and hopefully increase the chance of a sale in the near future. I have been working these types of events since 1999. In that time, I have never seen a vendor resort to playing a feature length movie on the big screen in order to draw customers into their booth. For the past 2 hours I have been watching Avatar in…

This is not a volley in the RDMBS wars. This is a quick cheat sheet for getting started using Toad for SQL Server if you are already used to using Toad for Oracle. Pages not Windows Toad for Oracle is a classic Windows application that utilizes a classic MDI presentation. Toad for SQL Server uses ‘Document Tabs’ for each ‘Window’ you have open in the application. Object Explorer vs Schema Browser Of course a ‘Schema’…

Updated 3/16/2014, Full disclosure: I picked up a 13″ MacBook Air this week I’m not sure I want it anymore. No, I do still want one, but the annoying voice in the back of my head has all but shut up. I know what you’re thinking, somewhere an angel has just lost it’s wings because I’m being selfish. As a professional geek, I’m supposed to buy this stuff and talk about it to everyone I…

Time. I finally have some ‘free’ time. I have chosen to spend this time wisely. Instead of being reactive to e-mails, phone calls, IMs, tweets, pokes, etc, I am going to get serious about my book. The book has been inside my head for several years now, and I feel comfortable enough with the story to put it into words. My goal is to have it available freely to any and all people who need…

So for the past two days I’ve been taking a group of about 15 people through the paces of Toad and working with SQL Server. These folks are coming from an all Oracle environment to a completely SQL Server one. Tangent: Yes, they are actually migrating an entire application over. They are in year 3 of this process, and I’m sure the money they are saving on infrastructure and licensing costs more than makes up…